Available from Boydell and Brewer
Right of Election:
in the freemen
Number of voters:
|10 Feb. 1715||WILLIAM HEYSHAM sen.|
|16 July 1716||WILLIAM HEYSHAM jun. vice William Heysham, deceased|
|26 Mar. 1722||SIR THOMAS LOWTHER|
|1 May 1727||CHRISTOPHER TOWER vice Heysham, deceased|
|22 Aug. 1727||CHRISTOPHER TOWER||312|
|SIR THOMAS LOWTHER||250|
|4 May 1734||SIR THOMAS LOWTHER||657|
|11 May 1741||SIR THOMAS LOWTHER|
|25 Apr. 1745||FRANCIS REYNOLDS vice Lowther, deceased||348|
|30 June 1747||FRANCIS REYNOLDS|
In the first half of the eighteenth century Lancaster was still a port of some importance, though in course of being eclipsed by Liverpool. There was a large nonconformist element. The borough returned Whigs, usually either neighbouring country gentlemen or merchants with local connexions. There were no contests until 1727, when the notorious Colonel Charteris, having acquired an estate near Lancaster,
declared himself a candidate for this town; upon which many inn-keepers and inferior poor and drinking freemen, about one hundred on horseback, and as many on foot, went to Hornby to invite him, which so much elevated him that he spent at least £100 a day for a week, which caused a great cry, and stood poll till Lowther and Tower had each about 300 votes, and he but 90, so he gave up, having spent near £1,000, and each of them elected near that sum.
the candidates were Sir Thomas Lowther, Robert Fenwick, Allen Harrison [the recorder] and Captain Hamilton. They polled three days ... upon which Lowther and Fenwick were declared duly elected, who had most of the gentry and substantial farmers, being their neighbours born and of good estate. It was computed it might cost them all £5,000 and particularly Harrison £2,000. Hamilton came in as his second, and hung most of his charge on Harrison.
In 1741, ‘Sir Thomas Lowther and Robert Fenwick were elected without opposition, only treating the freemen to the expense of about £100’.1 In 1745 there was a contest between Francis Reynolds, a duchy official, and Edward Marton who succeeded Harrison as recorder in 1748. Marton was defeated but was returned unopposed as a government supporter with Reynolds in 1747.
Author: Eveline Cruickshanks
- 1. W. Stout, Autobiog. 111, 126, 137.